As reported here, Judge Alito thinks that in interpreting the Constitution, "we should look to the text of the Constitution, and we should look to the meaning that someone would have taken from the text of the Constitution at the time of its adoption." This is identified as a particular principle of interpretation, originalism. I know I am probably not saying anything new here, but "originalism" as an interpretative metric of the Constitution is radically mystical and has no place in a secular society based on any principles of logical rigor or pragmatic discourse. It is inherently onto-theological, this idea that the rules that should be prescribed for and by society are to be determined by the convocation of the imagined psychological structures of dead persons, i.e. of ghosts. It is no accident that originalist judges are the same judges who are collapsing the so-called separation between church and state. They are not using an originalist doctrine to accomplish the enshrinement of the church; rather, any doctrine of originalism is inherently theological, and based on neo-Platonic and Christian economies of an eidetic text or referent imbued with natural, psychical power and a full, enduring and non-discontinuous presence.
I would go further. The very idea of a constitutional democracy, as it has developed in this country, is opposed to the notion of democracy. There is nothing proud or noble in the frequent claim that we Americans are not ruled by a monarch or a God but by law, i.e. a text. For this text has been imbued with the same ludicrous and totalizing notions of infallibility, of historical continuity, of respect as a monarch, God or tyrant-- it acts as a center in which is constantly located by those in finite power a force of radical regression and conservation of that power. It is a figment -- when F. Douglas burned the Constitution that was the last moment of its actuality, and it was judged unworthy. Don't believe the hype. There is no Constitution. If you want a Constitution to your liking, one that can constitute a better state, you will have to take it from the teeth of every politician, every judge, every law professor, every monopolist, etc.
UPDATE: Finnegan here, just wanting to make a quick point dovetailing off of Jeremy's remarks. One of the big problems/puzzles in social contract theory---and like it or not, this is a nation that exists because of a literal contract---is how any members of a society who were not alive at the time of the adoption of the social contract could be bound to it. One possible answer---and this is a thought that would need to be fleshed out more---is that the linguistic and social context of a particular point in time at least plays a role in determining the meaning of the contract. If a theory explicitly prohibits such a causal relation, as Alito-style originalism surely does, then it clearly (if implicitly) sets up a strong, maybe insurmountable barrier to the present members of a society consenting to a contract adopted by past members; and not because the present members are intransigent, but because their language and their society just isn't the language and society of the time of the contract's adoption.
In other words, if a Constitution is not an evolving thing---not more akin to a biological species than to a Platonic form---it is not a legitimate contract at all, but rather a prescription for coercion.